HPMA Selection Process Rigged to Harm Fishing Communities
19 July 2021
The government’s process to select Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs) needs a rethink. It is deliberately relegating human use issues to a second tier to be considered only once sites have been identified exclusively based on a set of ecological criteria. Instead, it should prioritise the search for sites that fulfil ecological criteria in areas where there are synergies with existing human uses of the marine environment.
Sledgehammer to Fishing in MPAs
1 February 2021
In a shocking development, the Marine Management Organisation has announced that it intends to ban all forms of towed bottom gears in the Dogger Bank SAC and the majority of three other offshore MPAs. The knock-on effects of this brutal approach will not stay confined to MPAs as fishing activity is displaced from its customary areas. The decision has been taken with zero discussion with those affected.
Government Panel Eyes No Fishing Zones Despite Existing World-Beating UK Marine Protected Area Network
8 June 2020
The government-sponsored Benyon Review, and its all-out advocacy for banning fishing in a new set of areas referred to as Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs), comes as a hammer blow for fishing communities having to cope with the impacts of the Coronavirus pandemic and the uncertainties of the Brexit negotiations. This is despite Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) already comprising 40% of the total area of English waters, with a swathe of 41 sites being designated only last year.
Developing a participatory approach to the management of fishing activity in UK offshore Marine Protected Areas
14 May 2020
Successfully involving the fishing sector and stakeholders in decision-making over the management of fisheries in marine protected areas (MPAs) is important to their overall effectiveness and sustainable management of our seas. The results of a new project including new tools and approaches to use when establishing, evaluating and adapting fisheries management measures in MPAs aims to help achieve just that.
Tranche 3 MCZs Must Avoid “Gold Plating” at the Expense of Livelihoods
13 December 2016
The NFFO is warning that the completion of the Marine Conservation Zone (MCZ) network in English and Northern Irish offshore waters must not become a book keeper's exercise that slavishly gold plates the network at the expense of livelihoods. This follows a new search for more MCZs by government nature conservation advisers.
New research to aid sustainable fisheries management in Marine Protected Areas
20 January 2016
Scientists now have a better understanding of the level of fishing activity that can be carried out within Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and still remain compatible with conservation objectives thanks to new research.